The New Year has arrived and many of us will have made New Year’s resolutions. If one of those is to get your home more organised, then this article is for you – it looks at 16 gorgeous shabby chic storage solutions that not only look fantastic but help to keep all your bits and pieces tucked away. Some you can make yourself, others are shop bought but are very affordable. Happy new year’s organising!
1. Flannel or towel holders
This clever idea is already featured on the shop storage page – old food tins have been painted and decoupaged, then trimmed with ribbon before mounting to a piece of painted MDF. The final piece is to hang on the wall and is perfect for holding small towels or flannels in the bathroom. You can find the full tutorial on the DIY Enthusiasts website.
2. Lace-effect storage basket
This incredible little basket has a pretty lace pattern and is made from easy clean plastic, perfect for storing all your bathroom bits and pieces. It has a generous 7 litre capacity which allows you to hold quite a lot of items – there are around 15 face/hair products in mine! At just £3.50 this is a shabby chic storage bargain not to be missed! Buy it here.
3. Shabby chic cupboard
Although I found this lovely cupboard online (not currently available), it struck me how easy it would be to replicate the style with an old unit. First you’ll need to paint your unit up and sand it to create an aged finish – find out more about painting furniture shabby chic style here. Once you’ve got your painted unit, you can apply fabric to the panels and drawer front, if you have one, using mod podge. Here’s a simple tutorial that shows you how:
4. White shabby chic baskets
If you have old natural wicker baskets hanging around, why not give them a new lease of life with some spray paint and a few decorative touches to make a gorgeous shabby chic storage solution? It’s best to use a matt spray paint such as Plasti-Kote (£4.98/400ml) as regular emulsion paints can just flake away. Spray outside – it’s better for mess and ventilation – and use a mask. Keep the coats thin for the best results and allow to dry inbetween. Once your baskets are completely dry, you can add further embellishments such as the ribbons and hearts shown in the above pic. Make your own from bits and pieces or take a look at the selection online.
5. Apple crates shelving
I found this picture of a pretty apple crates shelving unit on eBay – I love the addition of the string of fairy lights! The crates are available individually or in packs of two or three – and there are quite a few different styles you can buy. You can put them together to make a whole host of different storage arrangements to meet your needs – here’s another example of a single crate that has been whitewashed and turned into a little shelving unit:
Here’s a link to the eBay listing I found, but I noticed you can also pick up apple crates and other similar items like vintage wine crates on Gumtree for around £10.
6. Spoon hook rack
This gorgeous spoon rack is perfect for hanging up aprons, teatowels, hand towels or anything else you might want strung up in the kitchen. It uses stainless steel spoons which have been bent using a clamp and hammer. You’ll also need some old wood for the backboard and a sharpie to write the words on. You can find a full tutorial on how to (and how not to) make this rack on The Wood Grain Cottage (check out the other lovely makes on this site too!)
Here’s another version using a cheeseboard that I found on My Homely House which you could copy for yourself.
7. Pretty white shelves
I also found these lovely shelves on the Woodgrain Cottage website but the instructions for them is on The House of Smiths. They are much prettier than plain old shelves and can be put together using scraps of wood. The instructions suggest you use 7 inch wide board, door casing (this is like wood moulding which you can buy from B & Q or Wickes in 2.4 metre lengths for about £8.50 each), corbels (shelf brackets!) and then glue, nails, filler, sandpaper and paint. I found it surprisingly difficult to track down wooden shelf brackets – Ikea have them at £3 each (‘Ekby’) or you can pick them up on eBay for £11 – £12 a pair. In the end I figured it would be cheaper to buy a B and Q value pine shelf, add the trimming and then whitewash or paint it:
You can find more lovely shelving ideas in the shop!
8. Step ladder shelves
This step ladder has been converted into a gorgeous shelving unit for the bathroom, holding towels and decorations. I thought it’d be fun to see how easy it is to get hold of a similar ladder – check out all these ones I found on eBay which gives you an idea of what you might pay for one:
Just click here to search for ‘wooden steps’ – you might also want to adjust the item location as many sellers allow you to collect and avoid a hefty delivery charge.
9. Jewellery storage
I found this pretty necklace holder on Etsy – the item has now sold – but I thought how easy it would be to make the same thing. If you don’t have a load of old handles hanging about, click here to do a search for ‘vintage knobs’ on eBay and you’ll find loads of handles in different styles that would be perfect for this project. Of course, this lovely storage rack would be perfect for hanging all sorts of things up – towels, dressing gowns, tea towels, aprons, bags, belts and so on.
10. Cheese grater earring holder
This is another gorgeous idea for jewellery storage that I just had to share:
It looks like the feet are made from cup hooks and beads. I couldn’t find the original website for this so please do get in touch if it’s you, so I can give you a credit.
11. Wine box shelf
This quaint shelf (source: Decoratrix) is made from an old wine box which has simply been nailed to the wall using the top carrying loop. In this case it has been used to store colourful bracelets, strung over some glass bottles – but you could use it to store anything you like and create a group of shelves for a lovely display. If you don’t have an old wine box, these can be picked up on eBay for around £10-£15 (click here).
12. Fabric covered drawers
These little storage drawers (Source: Mulberry Moon) have been given shabby chic appeal with whitewash paint, a fabric cover over the drawer front and sweet lace trim. You’ll get a slightly better finish if you apply your fabric using mod podge – see the video tutorial for (3) above. You could use this technique to cover the front of larger drawers, or take an old shabby chest of drawers with a scratched top and use fabric to give it a lovely new surface.
13. Clipboard bulletin board
For your incoming mail, notes, coupons and receipts, what could be sweeter than these lovely clipboards, covered in pretty fabric or paper? (Credit: ishandchi) If you can’t find old clipboards to make these from, just use thin bits of board with a large bulldog clip. You can find pretty shabby chic fabrics in the shop!
14. Twine/ribbon/lace/string organiser
If you’re into creating your own shabby chic ‘makes’, chances are you’ll have a pretty decent collection of string, ribbon, lace and twine by now. This gorgeous little make uses a decorative frame, cup hooks and wooden dowel to make a lovely organiser that will not only keep your crafting supplies in check but will also look very cute on the wall. Find out how to make this at Corral the Chaos – you can use any decorative frame provided that it will allow you to screw in cup hooks.
15. Cotton/thread holder
Here’s another lovely idea if you like crafting and have plenty of cotton spools hanging about. The full tutorial for this thread storage holder is on Grey Luster Girl’s blog, but there’s really no need to make the frame from scratch – just buy an old decorative frame (or visit Dunhelm Mill for a new cheap one) and affix a board to the back. You could paint the frame white and cover the back with pretty vintage fabric for a more shabby chic look. After that, you’ll just need to mark out where your nails go and hammer them in.
16. Pretty magnetic strip
You’ve probably seen these magnetic strips before in the kitchen department – Ikea do one (‘Grundtal’) for storing knives. They’re very useful and not just in the kitchen – they’re great in the office for storing scissors and sewing supplies too – but they’re also plain and boring. So I was happy to come across this simple tutorial which shows how to cover them in lovely fabric for some instant charm – see it here on ‘Going home to roost‘ and don’t forget, there’s plenty of pretty shabby chic fabric ideas in the shop!
There are more shabby chic storage ideas in the shop too!